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Old 06-25-2014, 04:55 PM   #1
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Electrical Problem

I have a 2004 Greyhawk 25DS
Lately when I am dry camping the battery goes from fully charged to dead in ~9hrs. I think a wire is shorting out on the frame. In my driveway it holds its charge for 3-4 days. I bought a new battery. I have tried to position the RV a couple of different ways and different angles. I have checked it with the slide in and out, with the fridge running or not. anyone have anything similar happen??? I am running out of ideas and its driving me crazy.

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Old 06-25-2014, 05:11 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forum! Could it be due to the fact that you're using power when camping and not using power when it's parked in your driveway? I'm not trying to be a smartypants but if there was a wire shorted to ground (frame) it would blow a fuse.

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Old 06-25-2014, 05:31 PM   #3
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I am assuming you are camping off the power grid here... No Shore Power connected...

Most folks that camp off the power grid usually have a couple of batteries on-board with a AH rating of around 220AHs.

Only a few big things that really draw alot of battery current is Incandescent automotive type lights, furnace blower, and any POWER INVERTER you may have that generates 120VAC to operate some of the 120VAC Appliances. All of these items pull power from your Battery setup.

Each Incandescent type automotive bulb will draw around 1AMP each.
The Furnace Blower will draw around 5-6AMPS when running.
The Power Inverter (Not your Converter) will draw alot of DC CURRENT depending how big it is. If it is a 2000WATT Inverter it could draw 180AMPS DC CURRENT when fully loaded.

Need some more info of what you are doing I guess...

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Old 06-26-2014, 02:04 PM   #4
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I am camping off the grid with no shore power. This happens at night or during the day. The only thing consistently on is the fridge. We don't have a power inverter. A short that is not direct (i.e. high impedance) would not necessarily blow a fuse (this is a low voltage, 12V, system).

We are trying to figure out what is different from Dry Camping and the driveway.

The slide has a fridge, closet and the dinette.

One possibility is weight in the slide, since there is no food in the fridge and no clothes in the closet, and no beer under the dinette.

Any other ideas?
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Old 06-26-2014, 02:41 PM   #5
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Battery connections? Easy to check the voltage at the post and then at the other end of the wire.
How old is the battery? Battery could be sulfated from age.
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Old 07-22-2014, 10:45 PM   #6
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I strongly recommend you install a battery monitor that displays your voltage, current draw, and total amp hours used. Without a monitor, you have no idea what is going on; with one, you can quickly determine what's using up your battery and keep track of it's charging.

Short term, you could buy a clamp-on DC ammeter from Sears for $60, and use that to check the current periodically.
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Old 07-23-2014, 09:41 PM   #7
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A monitor that would do all that is great, but if it does amps, I assume it'd need to be in the "middle" of everything with a fairly thick gauge wire.

You do need an amp meter to tell you what is discharging your system. A simple 20A DC amp meter will likely work if you're discharging in a days time. <$30 tool on Amazon.

Without that amp meter, we can guess all day long.. And there are some good guesses above (inverter, fridge, other power) - but no way to tell. Unlikely something is shorting to ground - that usually blows a fuse or starts a fire.
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Old 07-23-2014, 10:55 PM   #8
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A clamp on DC ammeter is invaluable for chasing RV battery problems - and many other uses. This is the kind of device I'm talking about:


$40 from Amazon. There are many similar units available on Amazon and elsewhere, and even Sears sells a decent one in $50 range. I have a Sears unit, and one other, older one with fewer features.
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Old 07-24-2014, 11:26 AM   #9
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Clamp on would be easier.. I actually didn't know that they worked for DC, but they do.
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Old 07-27-2014, 03:30 PM   #10
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Is your battery getting fully charged? If it is not getting fully charged, it will discharge in no time at all. Are all the connections clean and tight?

A clamp meter will do fine. First place to check with the meter is the main feed from the battery to the controller. Then pull the fuse and see if the drain disappears, which would mean that the drain is toward controller. If the drain remains then you have something connected directly to the battery that is discharging it.

If the drain is toward the controller, you need to do is pull all your 12VDC fuses on the charge controller and reinstall them one at a time while monitoring the clamp meter. One of the fuses should show a large drain. Then look at the Jayco wiring diagram for your RV and try to determine what circuit has the drain on it.

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